In the midst of this shelter-in-place moment, plenty of us – especially those of us who work in some kind of independent capacity – are having trouble getting started, getting scheduled, and getting things done.
I’ve tried to think about books that might be useful in such a moment. So, here is a farily short suggested shelter-in-place reading list.
(And, a reminder: if you own a Kindle, or have the Kindle app on your iPad, you might be able to get the Kindle versions for free from your local library for free).
Suggestion #1 – Read (or re-read) Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Viktor Frankl survived the death camps, and wrote this masterpiece in a matter of days. It is a two-part book. Part two was actually a manuscript that he had written in the period before his ordeal; lost, of course. He reconstructed it from his memory, and refined it.
Suggestion #2 – Read Getting Things Done by David Allen. You have got to be the ultimate self-starter in these days. This book will give you a framework for your work.
I was tempted to recommended Drive by Daniel Pink, in this slot, on the power of intrinsic motivation. And/or The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande. The three of these together might give you a deeper understanding of why and how to be a good “remote:” worker, to help you prepare for the unique challenges you face a this moment.
Suggestion #3 – Read (or re-read) The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. This book is one of the novels called “The Great American Novel,” and may be the best book I have ever read (Frankl, the most important; this, the best).
The Grapes of Wrath is an American realist novel written by John Steinbeck and published in 1939. The book won the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and it was cited prominently when Steinbeck was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1962.
The Grapes of Wrath is begins with what happens to people who are hard working, on their family farms, and yet through no fault of their own, their lives are turned totally upside down. It is about more than that – but it is about that.
Those are my top three suggestions And here is a…
Bonus Suggestion #4 – Daniel Silva, The Kill Artist. You need a little escape, don’t you? I go with thrillers. And if you have never discovered Daniel Silva’s Israeli assassin Gabriel Allon, it is time to make his acquaintance. You may as well start with book #1 in the series: The Kill Artist. This summer, book #20 is scheduled for release. (Yes; I have read them all).
I believe you will find these suggestions worthy of your time. Give them a try!
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